What is Causing Your Swollen Feet?

Swollen feet can be caused by a number of factors. Some are completely harmless, temporary, and just a natural reaction to something happening in your body. Even if they are temporary, they may be uncomfortable so taking measures to reduce the swelling is important. Some causes of swollen feet may be more concerning and need medical attention. If your feet stay swollen and you also have other irregular symptoms, it’s important to seek medical attention. Below you will find some of the common causes of swollen feet, how to combat the issue, and when to seek medical attention.


Pregnancy: Swollen feet are very common during pregnancy as your body retains more water and produces much more blood and body fluids. You will likely notice that your feet become more swollen at night as you have likely been moving around all day. Below you will find some helpful tips to reduce your swollen feet during pregnancy.

  • Try to sit down every thirty minutes and avoid long periods of standing
  • Raise your feet when you are sitting down
  • Wear shoes that are comfortable and supportive (avoid high heels)
  • Avoid or cut back your salt intake and drink more water


Drinking Alcohol: Consuming alcohol can wreak havoc on your body, especially as you age. Your body retains more water after drinking as alcohol can severely dehydrate your body. While this is somewhat normal, if you experience frequent swelling after you drink, it could be a sign of a larger problem. If your swelling doesn’t subside within a few days, you should contact a medical professional. Below you will find some helpful tips to reduce the swelling during those first few days after you have consumed alcohol.

  • Avoid or cut back your salt intake and drink more water
  • Raise your feet when you are sitting down
  • Soak your feet in cold water


Hot Weather: The heat can impact your body in a number of ways and swollen feet is one issue that you may experience. This occurs during hot weather because your veins expand as a part of your body’s natural cooling process. Your bodily fluids will move into nearby tissue as a part of this process as well. As this occurs, your veins may have difficulty bringing blood back to your heart which results in collected fluid in your ankles. Below you will find some helpful tips to reduce the swelling in your feet during heat waves.

  • Soak your feet in cold water
  • Wear support stockings
  • Move around and do some leg exercises like squats
  • Rest with your legs elevated


Blood Clot: Solid clumps of blood can form in the veins of your legs. These make the blood flow to your heart difficult which can lead to swollen ankles and feet. Often the swelling occurs on one side of your body and may be accompanied by pain, tenderness, a warm sensation, redness, or a fever. If this occurs you should contact a doctor. Below you will find some helpful tips to reduce swelling before you head to the doctor.

  • Increase your fluid intake
  • Eat a balanced diet
  • Avoid smoking and excessive drinking
  • Move often and avoid extended periods of sitting (get up at least every thirty minutes)


Infection: Swollen feet may be caused by infections as they often are coupled with inflammation. You can get an infection from a number of things, including a cut, burn, blister, or bug bites. When you get an infection, you may also experience pain, redness, and irritation near the source. You will likely be prescribed oral or topical antibiotics to treat the infection. This should reduce the swelling as soon as they medicine kicks in.


While this is not a comprehensive list of all the reasons you may have swollen feet, they are some of the most common. Depending on the other symptoms you experience, you may need to see a doctor.


When to See a Doctor

While most swelling is temporary and only requires at home remedies for treatment, sometimes you may need to be seen by a medical professional. If you experience any of the following symptoms in addition to your swelling, head to the doctor as soon as you can.

  • If you touch your skin and it retains the dimple after you press it
  • Skin that is severely stretched or has broken
  • Chest pain, pressure, or tightness
  • Swelling on one side of your body only
  • Shortness of breath
  • Leg blisters


It’s better to be safe, so contact your doctor and get checked out. You may find out the swelling is not a major problem. Or, you may find out you have something more serious going on. Either way, you will have peace of mind.


Podiatrists in Southern California

If you are concerned there may be a larger issue underlying your swollen feet,contact Foot & Ankle Concepts, Inc. They are skilled in treating swollen ankles and are well-versed in a variety of medical conditions that could be causing the issue. They have a number of locations all over California, including Oxnard, Ventura, Santa Barbara, Camarillo, Palmdale, and Westlake. Contact Foot & Ankle Concepts, Inc. today for an appointment!